Felicia Williams on How PDX Can Survive the “Big One.”

The best way to survive an earthquake

This post is the first in a series based on our interview with Felicia Willams, City Council Candidate for Position 3. More on Felicia here.

Q: We’re all a little freaked out by thoughts of “The Big One.” Tell us more about your campaign plank on “Emergency Preparedness.”

Felicia: We’ve all read the New Yorker article about the “Big One,” and have witnessed what happened with failed federal relief in Puerto Rico. When a natural disaster strikes Portland, we can’t necessarily rely on the federal government for a rapid and adequate response, so we need to get serious about preparing our city.

Q: Agreed … and we secretly suspect Trump would be glad to leave the Left Coast hanging. (joke) Seriously, what would you do to get us better prepared to survive an earthquake?

Felicia: The best way to survive an earthquake is to prepare for it.

Q: That sounds good, but do you have any specifics?

Felicia: Yes, I do. Here’s my five point plan that I will support as a Commissioner:

  1. Install an earthquake early warning system attached to both civil defense sirens and personal smart devices. This would give people up to two minutes to get to safety.
  2. Train additional Neighborhood Emergency Team Members (NETs) throughout our City and making sure we have NET teams in every single Portland neighborhood and high density apartment building.
  3. Develop Emergency Operations Plans for all of our K-12 schools.
  4. Make sure every family has Personal Action Plan.
  5. Test the early warning system and Personal Actions Plans annually.

Q: We’ve heard you did disaster work in the Air Force?

Felicia:  Yes, my concerns for emergency preparedness grow out of my work in Command and Control while serving in the U.S. Air Force.  I know what it’s like to directly coordinate high level responses to fires, gas leaks, plane crashes, tornadoes, and mass casualty events.  When a disaster strikes, it will be critical to have calm, experienced leadership guiding our response, and this is exactly what I will provide Portland.

Q: Sounds like you’ve been in challenging situations before.

Felicia: Each is unique, but we can take action so Portlanders can work together to get through a disaster. We can utilize the public-private partnerships that already exist throughout Portland to create neighborhood and community safety plans so we can survive a catastrophic emergency.

PDX Police needs adequate staffing

Portland Police Bureau Recruiting
We support the Portland Police Bureau’s request of funds for 93 additional sworn officers, and nine additional non-sworn professional positions. These requests support the Mayor’s key priorities of increasing public safety and police accountability, maintaining the City’s critical infrastructure, and enhancing livability. The bureau’s requests for additional ongoing resources will advance the bureau’s mission and goals to provide 21st Century Policing services, to support organizational excellence and inclusion, and to rebuild police units so they can better deliver community policing to all residents.

Staffing within the PPB has been a critical issue for the bureau for many years, and there are several factors that impact this issue: recruitment and hiring, attrition and number of officers.

There are the fewer officers in the bureau as there were a decade ago, despite a 10 percent increase in Portland’s population. This request would increase the number of officer positions by approximately 10 percent–on par with Portland’s growth.

Click here to tell city council to invest in adequate police staffing

The Portland Police Bureau continues to face challenges in patrol staffing, which has led to declining response times. In the last five years, total 911 call volume has increased by over 22%. These calls include a 97% increase in stolen vehicle calls, 64% increase in unwanted persons calls and a 32% increase in disorder calls.

Without an increase in staffing, the response time for these calls will only grow, threatening the safety of all Portlanders.

We urge constituents with any public safety concerns to voice their support for this proposed budget.

Your voice in this conversation is essential, and we urge constituents to either submit written testimony, contact city commissioners or attend one of the upcoming community budget events:
 
Community Budget Forums
April 17, 2018, 6:30pm – 8:30pm
Roosevelt High School
6941 N Central St, 97203
Bus lines 44 and 75
Most testimony by random drawing

Budget Committee Hearings
May 10, 2018, 6:00pm – 8:30pm, hearing to receive public testimony 
Council Chambers, Portland City Hall
1221 SW 4th Ave., Portland, OR 97204 
 
May 16, 2018, 2:00pm, Council Action to approve City Budget, testimony heard
Council Chambers, Portland City Hall
1221 SW 4th Ave., Portland, OR 97204
 
Utility Rate Review
May 17, 2018 (first reading), 2:00pm, second reading May 23, 2018, time TBD
Council Chambers, Portland City Hall
1221 SW 4th Ave., Portland, OR 97204
 
TSCC Public Hearing 
June 6, 2018, 4:00pm to 5:00pm
Rose Room, Portland City Hall
1221 SW 4th Ave, Portland, OR 97204
 
Council Action to Adopt Budget
June 7, 2018, 2:00pm
Council Chambers, Portland City Hall
1221 SW 4th Ave, Portland, OR 97204

NPB: Starting Point for “March for Our Lives PDX”

March for Our Lives PDX

The North Park Blocks is proud to serve as the staging area for the “March for Our Lives PDX” Event Facebook Page

On Saturday March 24, student organizers from Portland-area middle schools, high schools, colleges, and universities will lead March for Our Lives PDX. Thousands of Portlanders will join more than 500 worldwide events to demand an end to gun violence in our schools and communities.

Supporters will gather at the North Park Blocks at 10:00 a.m. and march to Pioneer Courthouse Square from 10:30 to noon. The Grammy-winning band and Portland-based band, “Portugal. The Man”, will perform a concert in the Square beginning at noon. The event is expected to wrap up by 2 pm.

Event organizers have worked with the police and proper authorities and have permits for the march and gathering at the Square. As of today, 7000 people are signed up to attend.

Marchers are encouraged to use public transportation,  expect downtown to be very busy on Saturday.

March for Our Lives Press Release

March for Our Lives Route

PDX Winter Light Festival Coming to North Park Blocks

North Park Blocks is proud to host the 2018 Winter Light Festival. (Feb 1-3) Visitors will see installations at Froelick Gallery, WeWork, RACC, Elizabeth Leach Gallery, Blackfish Gallery, PDX Contemporary, PNCA and The Society Hotel. More about installations around North Park Blocks: Hub C

“Lumascope” by 2.ink Studio photo by Amy Sakuri

This year, we are honored to present more than 100 artists and organizations from all across the Cascadian region. The 2018 festival is truly citywide, with Festival Hubs and Affiliate Locations showcasing illuminated art installations, vibrant performances, and stunning kinetic fire sculptures throughout Portland.

As always, we are fully committed to keeping the Portland Winter Light Festival family-friendly, free to attend, and open to everyone. So bundle up and celebrate the power of light and community with us!

Why During The Winter?

Inspired by light festivals around the globe, the Portland Winter Light Festival, a Willamette Light Brigade event, aims to counteract the city’s tendency to hibernate during the winter. The festival brightens up the winter skyline and brings warmth to the outdoors with dazzling displays of light, color, and imagination. Bundle up and celebrate with us!

Free, All Ages Event!

The Portland Winter Light Festival is interactive, family-friendly, and designed to inspire adults and kids alike. Combining art and technology, people of all ages will find something to capture their spirit and fill their minds with imagination and wonder.

KGW: PDX has turned into TentCityUSA

Portland deserves safe and livable streets and public spaces.
We believe that the issue isn’t housing status but behavior.
Nonetheless …

Survey: 34% of Portlanders may leave the city because of homelessness
KGW is tackling the issue with a recent survey and television feature: #TentCityUSA

KGW writes: Homelessness has such a significant impact on Portlanders’ daily lives that 34 percent are considering moving out of the city because of the issue, according to a new survey from DHM Research.

In addition, more than half of Portlanders are dissatisfied with the way the mayor and police bureau are addressing homelessness.

KGW commissioned the survey as part of a larger project about homeless tent camping in Portland. The project, Tent City, USA, launches Monday at 6 p.m. on KGW-TV and online at tentcitypdx.com.

DHM Research, a nonpartisan and independent research and consulting firm, surveyed 300 Portlanders representative of the city’s population, based on age, gender, race, education level and area in which they live. The survey has a margin of error of +/- 5.7 percent.

The results show that homelessness is highly visible. The average Portlander sees someone living in a tent and someone panhandling five times a week. Residents said they see drug paraphernalia and human waste or urine more than twice a week.

Read more here